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Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism University of Southern California

Scripts Must Be Read Out Loud

Copy editing is one of the most important responsibilities in the newsroom. As video teammate this week, I worked with all the MJs throughout the day checking and double-checking their scripts for misspelled words, inaccurate information, and awkward sounding sentences. 

As video teammate, it is also extremely important to make sure scripts match the video. As the day gets more jam-packed in the afternoon, it becomes a challenge to make sure my eyes are glancing over every single script. There are times where I wish I had cloning abilities so I could copy-edit faster.

What I have learned is to always always always read scripts out loud and slowly! These scripts are for broadcast and sometimes what sounds alright when I am reading in my head, sounds strange when the anchors are reading out loud. So I am that person, talking to my computer screen throughout the day. It is the best way to make sure no errors are missed. 

After I write a story, I ask one of my fellow producers to check it. I also tell my MJs to copy edit the rundown during the time they are waiting for footage to digitize. The more eyes that are checking the rundown, the better!

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